By Byron Shehee
Alabama Political Reporter
MONTGOMERY—Governor Robert Bentley and Commerce Secretary Greg Canfield recently addressed the Economic Development Association of Alabama (EDAA) at the group’s winter conference and presented a series of economic development stimulants known as the Accelerate Alabama Jobs Incentives Package.
This package is designed to provide new credits for job creation while reducing the State’s reliance on debt to fund job incentives and is currently scheduled to be presented to the legislature during the upcoming session. The package looks to have the interest of several key members of the legislature. Today, Representative David Standridge (R-Hayden), Chairman of the House Rural Caucus, released the following statement regarding the governor’s proposals:
“A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to speak with the governor’s office regarding the need for incentives to spur economic growth in rural areas. As chairman of the Rural Caucus, I applaud Gov. Bentley and Sec. Canfield’s willingness to include a rural component in their package. While we have not been presented with the specific details of the package, I look forward to reviewing it and working with Gov. Bentley to improve the quality of life in our rural areas and small towns.
“The governor’s proposal to provide tax incentives to businesses that invest in rural areas is a good start toward a concentrated effort to improve the economic stability of Alabama’s rural communities. In the coming days the members of the Rural Caucus will be having an open dialogue about the needs of our rural communities. We plan to bring forward ideas and proposals that will not only help spur economic growth, but will also protect the rural way of life through investments in infrastructure, agriculture, essential services, and education.”
The House Rural Caucus is a bipartisan group of legislators dedicated to promoting policy and legislation that improves the quality of life of residents of rural Alabama and small towns. The caucus addresses issues related to infrastructure, agriculture, economic development and essential services, all of which directly affect rural Alabama.
Rep. David Standridge has represented District 34 in the Alabama House of Representatives, which includes parts of Blount and Marshall Counties, since a special election in 2012. He was re-elected in 2014, without opposition, to a full term in the State House. Rep. Standridge, a former law enforcement officer, Blount County Probate Judge and Chairman of the Blount County Commission, is married to Danna, a retired teacher. Rep. Standridge has three children, five grandchildren and lives in Hayden, AL.